Title: And
Part: 1/1
Author: Vikki
E-mail: nothereforlong@hotmail.com
Website: Vikki's LJ
Rating: G
Character/Pairing: Edward, Alphonse
Disclaimer: Don't own them.
Summary: When dreams are what's left.
Warnings: None.

Not that they're comfortable with their current states, but they can joke about them; Ed has used Al's head as a football more than once, and Al will sometimes laugh that he is superior to his brother's merely half-metal body - he can beat Ed every time they spar, now - it's not even close.

And Ed's dreams come less often, now - or perhaps he merely remembers them less - and it is not because he has forgotten, but maybe because they are so branded into his very existence that he does not need to dream to remember the terror. Yet there are still nights that he wakes up to find his hand clutched by a seated Al, who laughs his hollow laugh and asks if he's okay, even though he does not remember screaming.

And Al does not dream at all, but the days that he wonders whether he is not just dreaming come more often now. He sees his brother touch his glove and he knows that the touch is warm, but he does not know it. Perhaps, someday, he will wake up, he thinks, but more likely, he will discover that he is merely smoke given a breath of life for a moment, and this entire world is just something he made up. He wonders why he could not have a happier dream - but he does not tell his brother. Dreams never know they are a dream.

And although it rained on the day of their foolishness, rain does not always make them think of that day. But Ed sighs more often and looks up at Al guiltily when he hears the hollow patter of rain on Al's armor. Al laughs since he can't smile to reassure his dream-brother, and when they go inside, Ed towels Al's armor off, joking about how he'll rust, but his eyes are empty.

And sometimes they both think they're living just for each other, facing the world with a facade they cannot even let down for one another.

And Edward's dreams slip out of his fingers, while Alphonse's dreams consume his soul.